Title: “Back to Life”
Author: Danielle Allen
Release Date: July 2013
Length: 340 Pages
How I Got the Book: I got an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review
Summary From GoodReads:
Sahara Lee has spent the last ten years living with the guilt of a tragic accident and its aftermath. That night irrevocably changed the outgoing, fun-loving college freshman into an introverted, workaholic with no social life. Sahara isolates herself from everyone and everything that reminds her of home in an effort to forget what happened. Using art as a substitute for love, Sahara throws herself into music and art as a way to feel something other than the guilt that haunts her. She accepts her lonely existence as penance for the role she played in the accident. That is, until she meets Tyree Barker, the good looking entrepreneur with baggage of his own.
Blindsided by a legal loophole, Sahara is suddenly forced to confront the past she’s been running from. Juggling the guilty feelings of her past and the unexpected feelings of her present, Sahara’s future becomes complicated as she heads down a path of forgiveness, love, and heartbreak…and not in that particular order.
Back to Life reminds you that living and existing are two completely different ways to go through life. Grief will break you but guilt, guilt will destroy you. And once that happens, what can bring you back to life?
What I Thought:
I cannot begin to tell you the range of emotions I went through while reading this book – back and forth – happy and sad – I should have had emotional whiplash! But even with all of that, I loved it. Danielle Allen’s writing is amazing – beautiful and her plot twists and turns kept me on the edge of my seat. I got an email asking me to review this book and to be honest at first I was not sure whether or not I would be interetsed, but once I started I was hooked – and I’m so glad I decided to read it. From the summary above you can get the jist of what happens in the book, but I can tell you there is so much more to discover. It’s absolutely not one of those book covers that gives it all away before you read it.
I found Sahara to be… heart breaking. Watching herself keep busy with work and her music, to keep the demons at bay was heart breaking all in it’s own. Her guilt over what she thought she had done weighed even me down as I read the pages. That is one of the things I most enjoyed about the book, you could “feel” the emotions coming off of the pages, and I felt for Sahara. Punishing yourself for 10 years is…wow..just so sad. Then enter Tyree….
Tyree is amazing – strong, sweet, caring – and just what Sahara needs. It’s like he woke her up again, and for that I rallied for his character the entire book. Watching their relationship develop and watching him help her overcome her demons and open up was amazing – I love a story where the couple grows out of something that is so hard. Seeing her alive again through his eyes kept me reading through the more difficult moments. Although, Tyree is amazing – he does not come without baggage himself, and as i like to say “no one is perfect.” I don’t want to put any plot spoilers here, but I will tell you it will be a surprise and will add twists and turns you did not expect to be taking with this story…enough said – READ IT!
Now – we also had some supporting characters – I just really want to mention Emily who could not have been a better best friend. She kept on while Sahara shut her out continually for 10 years – who stays around for that? She does, Emily should be the depiction of what a best friend is.
In the end I give this book a 4.5/5 stars. I loved the writing, the characters, and the story. The romance was hot and sexy – and I cannot wait to see more from these two characters. The only thing I have to say is that the cliff hanger is KILLING ME! “Back to Reality” is out soon and I cannot wait to see what happens – hoping I”ll get to be part of the blog tour for that one too! As much as I love being left wanting more, I want more NOW!! So my reccommendation, get this like today – read it asap – and be ready for the next book to come out and see the next chapter of their story.